Sky watchers on Saturday were treated to the sight of a super moon, which is the phase of the Moon's orbit around the Earth when it is closest to our planet.

The distance between Earth and its satellite varies between 220,000 miles and 254,000 miles. This is because the Moon's orbit around the Earth is elliptical rather than circular. The super moon phenomenon is a rare celestial occurrence that allows us on Earth to see the Moon as 14% bigger and 30% brighter.

"The Moon goes round in an oval orbit so it can come very close to us, and if that coincides with a full moon, then it can look absolutely enormous," British astronomer Heather Couper told the BBC.

The 64-year-old author of books including The History of Astronomy (2007) and Stargazing (2006) also said the optical illusion was created only when the Moon appears on the horizon, i.e. when it rises or sets. It looks normal when viewed high in the sky.

According to the BBC, if you missed the super moon sighting on Saturday night, you could still catch a glimpse of this phenomenon on Sunday night, with south-west England and south Wales most likely to have the best views.

The next super moon is expected in August 2014.

Check out photos of the super moon...

A father and his son watch the moon rise over the skyline of New York from a lookout in Weekhawken, New Jersey, June 21, 2013. On Saturday a perigee moon coincided with a full moon creating a "super moon" when it passed by the earth at its closest point in 2013.REUTERS/Gary Hershor
he moon rises over the monument of Saints Cyril and Methodius, the fathers of Slavonic literature, in the Russian far eastern city of Vladivostok June 22, 2013.REUTERS/Yuri Maltsev
The super moon is pictured behind the cross of a church in Vienna June 23, 2013. The largest full moon of the year called the "super moon" will light up the night sky this weekend.REUTERS/Heinz-Peter Bader
Two people watch the full moon also referred to as a "super moon" rise in the sky from the Eagle Rock Reservation in West Orange, New Jersey, June 22, 2013.REUTERS/Gary Hershorn
Venus and Moon to appear closest to each other on 10/11 July.REUTERS/Gary Hershorn
The largest full moon of 2013, also referred to as a "super moon," rises over the Iwo Jima memorial in Arlington, Virginia, near Washington, June 22, 2013.REUTERS/Jason Reed
People ride the Luna Park Swing Ride as the Super Moon rises on Coney Island, June 22, 2013. The largest full moon of the year called the "super moon" will light up the night sky this weekend.REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
The largest full moon of 2013, also referred to as a "super moon," rises over the Iwo Jima memorial in Arlington, Virginia, near Washington, June 22, 2013.REUTERS/Jason Reed
People ride the Luna Park Swing Ride as the Super Moon rises on Coney Island, June 22, 2013. The largest full moon of the year called the "super moon" will light up the night sky this weekend.REUTERS/Carlo Allegr
People walk through a gazebo as a full moon also referred to as a "super moon" rises in the sky as seen from the Eagle Rock Reservation in West Orange, New Jersey, June 22, 2013.REUTERS/Gary Hershorn